The Problem of Long Covid
People generally are divided into two camps, those who consider the disease exists and those who don’t, but the existence is very likely and a predictable consequence from the method Covid uses to enter the body, not just being restricted to respiratory system.
Covid uses the human ACE2 enzyme as its method to gain entry, in nearly every case originally through the lungs, other areas tending to be more of a peripheral infection. In some people the infection is slight and easily repaired by the body, in other it gains a more substantial entry and causes major problems that may become permanent or semi-permanent.
But what is ACE2? It is an enzyme in the body that is in constant balance with ACE, the acronym standing for angiotensin converting enzyme. One converts angiotensin to angiotensin 2 and the other converting angiotensin 2 to angiotensin. Angiotensin is a hormone that is part of the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system that regulates blood pressure and sodium retention and has a major effect on other hormones and enzymes. It is ACE2 that Covid attacks and uses.
Where can ACE2 be found? It has high concentrations in the lungs but is found in the surface cells of most major organs, the heart, kidneys, liver and the brain, being part of the semi-permeable membranes that surround them in the squamous epithelial cells. This upshot of this being that if there is a severe infection the surface cells of the body work in a less efficient way, being deprived partially of their ACE2 content. Cells are constantly being replaced at different rates, the younger you are the more efficiently this is done, Covid attacked cells being a lot less recycled in this way in older people, giving a much longer recovery period or if they completely recover, so in some ways you might consider the long-term disease similar to premature aging of the organs.
The cell replacement rates in days is listed below:
|Type||Renew||Moon trip renew times||Mars trip 1 year renew times|
|White blood cells||4||1.50||91.31|
|Red blood cells||120||0.05||3.04|
Then we have the problem by which things like blood pressure tends to be regulated. Many are ACE inhibitors, lowering the levels of ACE and onto ACE2 which can have the side effects of low blood pressure, cough, hyperkalemia (high potassium levels), headache, dizziness, fatigue, nausea, and kidney impairment, symptoms also generally associated with long covid.
The biggest problem seems to be limiting the resultant blood pressure without impairing the function in ACE2 depressed organs, sodium salt in the diet raising blood pressure but requiring a re-balance, something that doesn’t just reduce balances, but restoring functionality at a higher level.
It’s like an equation where efficiency E is balanced by A1 and A2, 100E=50A1 / 50A2, the current methods reducing the quantities of A1 because A2 is lower, covid giving 40A1, the normal response being to reduce A1 to 40 to balance it rather than trying to regain the 50 level activity.
Possible treatments. A rebalancing of higher activity of both ACE and ACE2, reducing potassium levels with calcium chloride, insulin or loop diuretics while reducing the effects of higher sodium levels with vasodilators in a similar method to improving performance by using depressants and counterbalancing stimulants at the same time, not pushing one above the other. Other possible sources may be things that promote better repair levels such as higher levels of Vitamin C, Zinc, and Vitamin A or things like echinacea preparations.